Air Conditioner taking longer to heat the office in Winter

Why is the Air Conditioner taking longer to heat the office in Winter?

cold image

To answer this question you need to understand how an air conditioner works, an air conditioner moves heat from one place to another – as simple as that, this is why they are also referred to as ‘heat pumps’.

When you set the air conditioner to cooling mode, the refrigerant within the system absorbs heat from the indoor air and this is then moved to the outdoor unit where it is expelled to the surrounding outside air (if you feel in front of the outdoor unit you will see the air coming out of it is warm).

When you set the air conditioner to heating mode, the refrigerant within the system absorbs heat from the outdoor air and this is then moved to the indoor unit where it is expelled into the office (if you feel in front of the indoor unit you will see the air coming out of it is warm).

When it’s cold outside there is less ‘heat’ for the refrigerant to absorb which in turn is then transferred inside thus it can take longer for a system to heat an office when it’s cold outside.  Modern systems for the UK market can provide heating to a room down to an outside temperature of -15C but it takes longer to do this.

The use of timers means you can start the Air Conditioner system before people arrive at the office (thus the room can be heated & be comfortable before staff arrive).  When the temperature drops to below 0C we recommend that people keep their systems turned on in heating mode throughout the night but at a lower temperature (say 18C), this means the office temperature doesn’t drop that low which means it won’t take as long to heat up to the preferred temperature set point.

You might think that this is a waste of electricity but there is evidence to show that you actually use more electricity in trying to raise the temperature in an office from say 12C to 22C than by leaving the system to ‘tick over’ at 18C overnight before raising it to 22C.

So, now you know why the Air Conditioner takes longer to heat the office when it gets colder outside!

Why Is My Air Conditioner Not Blowing Cold Air?

portable air conditioningWhat a problem to have, your air conditioning is not blowing out cold air!

Reason 1 – User Error

If your air Conditioner not blowing cold air, first of all, check that you have set the system to ‘cooling’ mode, this is normally the snowflake symbol on the controller, if it’s on the ‘snowflake’ symbol make sure you have set the temperature lower than the current room temperature (if the room temperature is 23C and you have set the system to 24C it won’t blow cold as the set temperature is higher than the room temperature) – these might sound obvious checks but we do get these sort of phone calls.

Reason 2 – Clogged Filters

If the indoor unit filters are clogged this restricts airflow getting into the unit, if the airflow is restricted then the performance of your system will be seriously affected, if you know how to access the indoor unit filters have a look, if they’re dirty give them a clean, if you haven’t had your system serviced recently then now is the time to book a service, cleaning filters is just one of the tasks our engineers carry out when servicing an air conditioning system.

Reason 3 – Component Failure

If your system is definitely set to ‘cooling mode’ and the set temperature is lower than the current room temperature then the indoor unit should blow out cold air, if it doesn’t then there is a problem with the system.  Most modern systems have a ‘self-diagnosis’ function and the system should enter into a fault mode and a fault code displayed, this is either in the form of an error code (such as E1) or in the form of a blinking led sequence (example – one of the led lights on the unit will flash in a sequence such as 3x blinks then a pause then 3x blinks again).  If this happens try to make a note of the fault code and give us a call with the fault code – this can save time in getting your system repaired, for example, a 2010 LG wall-mounted system may display a fault code of the green led light continuously blinking once, then a long pause before blinking once again, we can look this up and know that there is a problem with the indoor temperature sensor, we know that it is highly likely that the indoor temperature sensor is faulty and your system requires a new sensor, as such we can order the new sensor and then come along on one visit to repair the system thus getting your system repaired as quickly as possible.

Reason 4 – Low on Refrigerant

You might notice that the system is blowing out cold air but that it isn’t as cold as it once might have been, as it’s still blowing out cold air the system might not enter fault diagnosis mode but you are sure the system isn’t working correctly, in this instance the system might be low on refrigerant (the substance contained within the pipework of the system).  In this instance you will need an engineer visit to check the refrigerant levels of the system (we can do this by taking pressure and temperature readings from the system and by also removing the refrigerant from the system whilst weighing it out and then checking the weight of the refrigerant removed with the factory charge weight as indicated on the outdoor unit data plate), if the system is low on refrigerant then there is a small leak somewhere and an engineer would need to find/repair the leak before putting the correct weight of new refrigerant back into the system.

The above tend to be the common reasons as to why an air conditioning system doesn’t operate correctly if in any doubt consult an expert Air Conditioning Company with trained FGas Qualified Engineers, a good engineer will relish the challenge of testing his knowledge  & skills in order to diagnose a fault and get your system fully working again.

Call our service team for any air conditioning issues you may have.
01273 803820

Why Is My Air Conditioner Leaking water?

air conditioning services sussex

Air Conditioning Indoor units when operated in ‘cooling mode’ create water, this water is collected into an indoor unit drain pan and is then either gravity fed away or pumped away if your indoor unit is leaking water something has gone wrong.

Reason 1 – Bad Installation of Indoor Unit

Is your indoor unit level? If it isn’t then the water could be spilling out of the indoor drain pan before it can be drained away, we have been called out to clients who have leaking indoor units to find the units haven’t been installed correctly by their previous A/c contractor.

Reason 2 – Bad Installation of Gravity Drain Pipe

Does the gravity drain pipe actually have a gravity fall on it? Water won’t flow uphill so if the drain pipe has been installed with an uphill gradient it won’t drain and water will eventually drip out of the indoor unit.

Reason 3 – Blocked Drain Pan / Gravity Drain Pipe

An indoor unit draws air into it from the room, this is through indoor unit filters, filters cant trap 100% of the dust that is in the air & so dust/dirt can find its way into the indoor unit drain pan, if this collects & builds up over time the drain pan or drain pipe can become clogged, if it becomes clogged enough it can restrict water flowing through it enough that water backs up and eventually drips out of the indoor unit.

Reason 4 – Pump Failure

If your system couldn’t have a gravity drain pipe then your contractor would have chosen to install a condensate removal pump, these are specifically designed to pump the water to a suitable outlet, a pump has moving parts thus at some point it can fail, if the pump fails then water will back up and eventually drip out of the indoor unit.  Some pumps have filters which require cleaning every 6months (as per pump manufacturer recommendations), if the filter isn’t cleaned then water won’t flow through the filter to the pump mechanism and so can back up and drip out of the indoor unit.

Is Your Outdoor Unit Leaking Water?

It is normal for an outdoor unit to leak water if the indoor unit has been set to heating mode unless the water leaking from the outdoor unit could cause a slip hazard in the form of turning to the ice during the Winter months then this shouldn’t be a cause for worry.

The above tend to be the common reasons as to why an air conditioning indoor unit leaks water, regular servicing of your system in line with manufacturer recommendations will help prevent water leaking from your Air Conditioner, and during a service visit an engineer will use specific chemicals to clean an indoor unit which helps break down any blockages within the drain pipe, they will also check the pump operation to ensure that it is working correctly at the time of the service.